During the hysteria of the covid pandemic questions swirled around how the federal government would respond to the events under the declaration of a national health emergency. What kind of powers would they claim to have and which constitutional rights would they try to suppress? What many Americans did not consider, however, was the implementation of emergency powers under state governments rather than the White House.
Most of the covid mandates crushing the US economy during that period were not federal mandates, but state mandates, and there's a good reason why covid tyrants chose to focus on state level restrcitions.
There are a number of requirements and obstacles for any president seeking to enforce mandates at the federal level, along with more scrutiny and oversight than is commonly understood. Though a president can declare emergencies unilaterally, there are still some legal checks and balances (to be sure, these are quietly being eroded with each passing year).
On the other hand, state governors in 44 states have sweeping authorities under emergency conditions, with very little immediate legal recourse. As we have seen recently in places like Hawaii and now New Mexico, Democrat governors have been playing with fire (no pun intended) as they seek to push the envelope of emergency controls at the state level.
In Hawaii, the exploitation of state emergency provisions under Governor Josh Green led to possibly thousands of deaths as they refused to release water supplies for fire fighting and even blockaded Maui residents, forcing them back into the blaze. They have even put an information blackout in place and denied news organizations access to the scene of the disaster. One has to ask – Was this done out of stupidity? Or was this a test to see what kinds of trespasses and controls citizens would accept?
In New Mexico we see a similar extreme overstep by Governor Michelle Grisham, who believes she has the authority to dictate the 2nd Amendment rights of Albuquerque residents due to rising crime. The level of mental gymnastics on display in her arguments to justify the banning of lawful open carry and conceal carry protections make it clear that this is not about protecting the public. The lack of logic and reason indicates that this is an ideological decision based in zealotry. Watch as she struggles to present any reasonable position – turning instead to deflection.
After suspending the right to carry firearms, New Mexico’s Governor just said her duty to uphold her oath to the constitution is "not absolute" pic.twitter.com/wY3xSwIUIs— John Hasson (@SonofHas) September 9, 2023
The root of her argument is this: “I am banning legal firearms carry in Albuquerque because under emergency powers I can.”
That's it. That's all she's got.
But this is not a valid argument and there are a number of reasons why.
First, crime is rising across the nation, predominantly in Democrat controlled cities.
Albuquerque has a Democrat mayor and New Mexico is a Democrat run state. If crime is rising, it is the fault of Democrats. But instead of taking responsibility for their terrible planning and policies, Democrat leaders are once again blaming inanimate objects (guns) and using mass punishment of people who lawfully carry (primarily conservatives). In other words, Dems are ruining the country and creating a national crime wave, and then making conservatives pay for it with their rights.
Second, restrictions on open carry and conceal carry are not going to reduce the crime rate because criminals don't care about laws or emergency powers.
If anything, the violent crime rate will rise as criminals feel emboldened knowing that most citizens are now disarmed.
Third, Grisham has presented no evidence of a legitimate emergency other than “crime is bad right now.”
The emergency is ambiguous rather than defined. Meaning, emergency restrictions could be renewed over and over again, unless citizens step up and do something about them.
Fourth, the focus on open carry and conceal carry seems to be an attempt at a totalitarian tip-toe.
A large number of gun owners do not carry regularly so they may not feel personally affected by the rules. Meaning, the governor has reduced the level of opposition by attacking just one aspect of gun rights. This is usually how authoritarians institute control – They don't remove your rights all at once, they do it a piece at a time.
Fifth, gun carry laws are generally a legislative decision that usually requires a public vote.
Grisham is attempting to bypass all checks and balances as if the legislative process does not matter.
Sixth, emergency powers are often declared unconstitutional by courts after the fact.
For example, the Michigan Supreme Court held that the Emergency Powers of the Governor Act (EPGA), which Governor Whitmer used to justify her draconian COVID-19 executive orders, was unconstitutional because it delegated legislative power to the executive branch in violation of the Michigan Constitution. But these court decisions often come well after the damage has already been done. It is up to the citizenry to defy such orders when necessary and let the courts sort out the aftermath later.
Seventh, Grisham argues that rising crime is a “public health emergency,” using the same language relegated to the covid response.
Crime has nothing to do with public health and is a legal concern handled through either social programs or increased police presence. Disarming the public is not within the purview of a health emergency – Grisham has greatly overstepped her bounds.
The timing and tone of the state government decision on gun carry in Albuquerque reads like a political maneuver, a test to see what the public will submit to. Grisham admits that she expects numerous legal challenges to her decision, but she does not seem too concerned with the public reaction. Maybe she should be? Or, is she so certain that the New Mexico 2nd Amendment community will sit on their hands that she feels comfortable there will be no protests, no open carry marches and no public defiance to be worried about?
One thing is inevitable, if Grisham is unopposed in New Mexico, numerous Democrat governors and mayors across the country will try to enforce the exact same emergency powers.